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Should I be concerned... odd beer smell

I hate to start another “is my beer infected” thread but I’ve been making funny faces at my American Brown Ale the past couple weeks.

Here’s the scoop…

March 26 I did my first all grain/BIAB batch, half-batch (2.5 gallon) American Amber Ale. Fermented ~70* with Wyeast American Ale 1056.

April 12 I racked it to the secondary and pitched my partial mash American Brown Ale on the yeast cake. Due to a higher than anticipated gravity, I topped off to about 5.75 gallons. Fermentation seemed really quick so not thinking about it, I picked up the bucket and gave it a swirl a couple times in the two weeks until my next brew day. Fermented around 68*.

April 23 I bottled the Amber and racked the Brown. The brown smelled a little… off… But I racked it anyway and figured that maybe it had something to do with being a partial mash. I did notice that the Krausen remains had a lot of what appeared to be green hop matter stuck in it on the sides of the bucket and a whitish sort of stuff mixed in. Made me worry about an infection but a search online served to reduce my fears. When I racked, because of the large amount of brew in the primary, I filled my 5-gallon carboy all the way up (I mean like 3" below the bung full). Scooped out half of the yeast cake to save and brewed and pitched an American Amber Ale partial mash on the yeast cake. Before pitching I cleaned all of the Krausen off the bucket and gave it a wipe with sanitizer.

Now, because I filled my carboy up beyond what you’re supposed to, I can’t tell by looking at it if I have just normal co2 bubbles on the surface or a pellicle. I do know that there are a fair amount of bubbles coming to the surface and the current temp of the brew is about 65*. I also know that if I pull the bung out and smell it, it smells vaguely like vomit. :cry:

I was worried so I pulled the lid up on the primary and peeked at the American Amber partial mash and it all looks normal. Doesn’t smell as funky either. So where do I go from here? I was planning on bottling the brown but now I’m not sure what to do with it. Did I somehow manage to infect my Brown but nothing else? Kind of doesn’t make sense since I re-used the yeast cake from it. The brown has a pretty substantial yeast cake in the secondary and there are bubbles rising to the surface fairly regularly (not enough to work the airlock regularly though). Do I sample it and if it tastes ok bottle it? Do I just leave it there and wait? Is there some sort of test I can do other than take a hydrometer reading?

I would definitely sample it, chances are its OK.

I agree with Lennie. Sample it and see. If its “off” wait a couple weeks and resample as the beer is young. If it doesn’t improve and tastes bad you can dump it at that time. I wouldn’t be in a rush to dump anything.

For anyone wondering what happened…

I was supposed to bottle it like two weeks ago and never got around to it with work and all. So it sat. Pulled the bung to see what’s up over this past weekend and the smell was gone as well as the foam and whatnot on top. Smelled fine, tasted flat and it’s bottled. :mrgreen:

Sampled my first bottle of it today, it’s been two weeks in the bottle. Carbonation was still a little low. It tasted pretty good at first but as I got towards the bottom of the glass it became obvious that it was still a little young. That said, I think it’ll be just fine.

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